Mark Smelzer, publisher of JCK Publishing Group for five years, has resigned to take a position as publisher of the consumer publication The Advocate and advocate.com.
In a note to his staff members, Smelzer said “Right now, however, I am overwhelmed with sadness about leaving all my good friends at JCK. I’ve never worked with a group of people I’ve adored more…it’s literally breaking my heart.”
In the five years that Smelzer was publisher, JCK cemented its position as The Industry Authority and also accomplished the launch of new publications and the hugely successful JCK Jewelers Choice Awards, now entering its third year. Also during this time, JCKonline.com accomplished seven-fold growth in unique visitors, increased advertising revenues, and won awards (including best business-to-business blog for Rob Bates’ “Cutting Remarks.”)
Addressing the future, Smelzer wrote: “This brand is much bigger than any publisher, and I know this team is going to continue creating great product and be positioned perfectly for the economic rebound.”
A search for a replacement begins immediately. In the interim, Kevin Castellani, group publisher of Reed Business Information’s retail titles, will oversee the operations at JCK. Rich Dalglish, managing editor, will continue to oversee the editorial product and Donna Borrelli, associate publisher, will continue to oversee the business side of the operation. “JCK is an amazing 140 year-old brand, and we look forward to all the exciting opportunities ahead,” said Castellani.